Fact:4M+people attend downtown venues each year

Downtown is Winnipeg’s premier entertainment destination hosting a mosaic of districts that are home to unique cultures. It is where history meets the present and where hundreds of thousands of people gather to experience what our city has to offer. Whether it is our thriving arts and theatre, a concert or sporting event or an evening submersed in our nightlife, visitors are always spending money at local businesses, enjoying a positive downtown experience that will keep them coming back.

Major Downtown Events

There are now over 62 festivals that run in the downtown, up from 50 at the end of 2013 [5], attracting well over a million people to the downtown. Here are some of the major events:

Festival or event Attendees (2015 or most recent) [1]
Aboriginal Day Live & Celebration 40,000
Banff Mountain Film Festival 1,550
Barge Fest 30,000
Big Fun Festival 1,400
Canada Day at The Forks 60,000
Winnipeg Comedy Festival 12,000
Manitoba Culture Days 35,000
Doors Open Winnipeg 25,000
Edmonton Street Festival 1,500
FemFest 1,546
Festival of Fools 35,000
Winnipeg Fringe Theatre Festival 101,488
TD Winnipeg International Jazz Fest 40,000
Keeping the Fires Burning 800
Winnipeg International Children’s Festival 40,000
Lebowski Palooza 275
Manito Ahbee Festival 20,280
ManyFest 70,000
Master Playwright Festival 9,250
Manitoba Electronic Music Exhibition 12,000
Movies on Memorial 3,000
Winnipeg Symphony Orchestra New Music Festival 6,000
Scotiabank Family New Year’s Eve at The Forks 25,000
Pride Winnipeg Festival 20,000
Winnipeg Santa Claus Parade 40,000
Winnipeg International Writers Festival 4,500
Winnipeg Wine Fest 9,000
Folklorama (downtown pavilions, pop-up events, kick-off at The Forks, media event, group tours) 38,922
Pop Nuit 800
Downtown Farmers’ Market 7,000
Out to Lunch Summer Concerts 2,500
Socca Reggae Festival 8,000
Cluster: New Music + Integrated Arts Festival 375
Canada Day Living Flag 3,500

Attendance at downtown venues is over 4,000,000 people/year (with only ¾ reporting), with an additional 4 million at The Forks [2]

Downtown Venue Visitors/Year
Performing Arts
Manitoba Theatre Centre- John Hirsch Mainstage 96,451
MTC Warehouse 18,817
Prairie Theatre Exchange 100,000
Winnipeg Symphony Orchestra 104,000
Royal Winnipeg Ballet 30,591
Manitoba Theatre for Young People 49,319
Manitoba Opera 12,885
Winnipeg Jazz Orchestra 2,829
Virtuosi Concerts 2,871
Museums and galleries
The Manitoba Museum  221,300
Science Gallery  65,300
Planetarium  43,800
Manitoba Children’s Museum 167,561
The Winnipeg Art Gallery 120,235
Splash Dash Tours 26,000
Manitoba Legislative Building 17,845
Plug In Institute of Contemporary Art 254,000
Gallery 1C03 5,000
Dalnavert Museum 4,268
Manitoba Sports Hall of Fame 574
Ukrainian Cultural & Education Centre 6,000
Winnipeg Railway Museum 8,159
Manitoba Crafts Museum and Library 865
Towne Cinema 129,891
Globe Cinema 39,000
Cinematheque 13,000
Performance / Theatres / Concert halls
Centennial Concert Hall 275,000
Pantages Playhouse Theatre  57,670
Burton Cummings Theatre  40,000
Garrick Centre 27,000
Sports & Recreation
Millennium Library 1,007,559
Winnipeg Goldeyes – CanWest Global BallPark 320,000
U of W Duckworth Centre 176,500
YMCA/YWCA 472,746
Granite Curling Club 1150
Major Downtown Entertainment Venues
The Forks 4,000,000
MTS Sports & Entertainment Centre 1,026,980
Winnipeg Convention Centre 308,890

18 major public art installations have been built downtown, adding over $1.8 million of investment [3] [4]

  • Urban Art Gallery.  Various artists.  295 Portage Ave. 2014
  • Play Your Part. Various artists.  Various locations downtown. 2014
  • Lights on Broadway Sculptures. Various artists. Various locations along Broadway. First instillation 2013.
  • City.Block. Stop. David Perrett’s. Ellice Avenue entrance to the U of W. 2010
  • From Here Until Now. Spmb (Eduardo Aquino & Karen Shanski). Osborne Bridge 2011/2012
  • Emptyful. Bill Pechet. MillenniumLibraryPark. 2012
  • Sentinel of Truth. Darren Stebeleski. Millennium. 2012
  • Marbles on Portage. Erica Swendrowski. Portage Planter Project. 2012
  • You You + You. Jacqueline Metz & Nancy Chew. United Way, Main St. 2010
  • DIY Field. Germaine Koh. Central Park. 2011?
  • Living living room. Erica Swendrowski. MilleniumGarden (and other locations). 2011
  • PosterBoards in the Exchange. Michael Carroll, Laurie Green and Judith Panson. Exchange District. 2009.
  • Spence Community Compass: Finding Home. Leah Decter and the Spence Neighbourhood Association. 2008.
  • Bike Racks on Broadway. Jessica Koroscil, Vanessa Kroeker and Paul Butler. 2008.
  • Untitled. Cliff Eyland. Millennium Library. 2005.
  • The Illumination. Nicholas Wade. Millennium Library. 2009
  • Picturing a Bright Future: The Eritrean Women’s Photography project. Sarah Crawley with the Eritrean Community in Winnipeg. Quilt installed at The Immigrant Centre, book available through Winnipeg Public Libraries. 2010
  • LightSound Towers. SoPo Square (South Portage Sqare). Proposed.

[1] IUS, April-June 2013. Survey of Downtown Winnipeg Venues, unpublished.
[2] The Forks North Portage Partnership, 2014. Retrieved from: www.theforks.com/about/the-forks
[3] Winnipeg Arts Council, 2013
[4] Winnipeg Free Press, 2014
[5] Downtown Winnipeg Trends 2016 Update, July 18, 2016